On 22 April 2016, Côte d’Ivoire’s state-owned forest management corporation SODEFOR signed a new contract with the Wild Chimpanzee Foundation, extending the organisation’s mandate to act as independent forest observers.
SODEFOR is the main implementer of forest policy in Côte d’Ivoire, with responsibility for reforestation and for managing natural forests, termed ‘classified’ forests. The new contract relates to one such forest, the Cavally classified forest, which is also a logging concession.
In 2014, in the context of Côte d’Ivoire’s VPA negotiations with the EU, the Wild Chimpanzee Foundation obtained funding from the EU FAO-FLEGT programme to carry out independent monitoring in Cavally. The new contract extends these activities for three more years.
Côte d’Ivoire’s Minister of Water and Forests, Louis-André Dacoury–Tabley, attended the signing ceremony.
The Director-General of SODEFOR, Mamadou Sangare, called for a strong collaboration of all key actors in this project to meet the objectives laid down in the sustainable forest management plan of the Cavally forest.
Emmanuelle Normand of the Wild Chimpanzee Foundation said the first phase of the project had strengthened the capacities of communities for independent monitoring and good forest management.
In the second phase, the Wild Chimpanzee Foundation aims to build on these achievements and show the benefits of this approach to forest governance. The new phase will also build the capacity of SODEFOR to ensure sustainable management of the forest, including through support to controls and surveillance.